Welcome to the new Independent website. We hope you enjoy it and we value your feedback. Please contact us here.



Births: Waldemar the Great, King of Denmark, 1131; John Baptist Vanloo, painter, 1684; Benedict Arnold, soldier and spy, 1741; Ludwig Alois Friedrich von Kochel, naturalist and writer, 1800; Matthew Fontaine Maury, oceanographer, 1806; Ignace-Henri-Jean-Theodore Fantin-Latour, painter, 1836; The Rev Wilson Carlile, founder of the Church Army, 1847; Pierre Loti (Louis-Marie-Julien-Viaud), novelist, 1850; Jean Mieczyslaw de Reszke, tenor, 1850; Dr Albert Schweitzer, missionary surgeon, 1875; Hugh Lofting, author, 1886; Hal Roach, film producer and director, 1892; John Roderigo Dos Passos, novelist, 1896; Sir Cecil Walter Hardy Beaton, photographer and stage designer, 1904; Russ Columbo (Ruggiero de Rudolpho Columbo), singer and actor, 1908; Joseph Losey, film director, 1909.

Deaths: Odoric of Pordenone, Franciscan and traveller, 1331; Thomas Coventry, first Baron Coventry, judge, 1640; Dr John Boyse, scholar and translator of the Bible, 1643; Pietro Francesco Cavalli, composer, 1667; Edmond Halley, astronomer, 1742; John Pindar ('Peter Pindar'), physician and poet, 1819; George Dance the younger, surveyor and architect, 1825; Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres, painter, 1867; Lord Napier of Magdala, soldier, 1890; Henry Edward Manning, cardinal, 1892; Albert Victor, Duke of Clarence, 1892; Lewis Carroll (Charles Lutwidge Dodgson), author, 1898; Ernst Abbe, physicist and industrialist, 1905; Harry Furniss, caricaturist and illustrator, 1925; Joaquin Turina, composer, 1949; Humphrey DeForest Bogart, actor, 1957; Frederick IX, King of Denmark, 1972; Sir Robert Anthony Eden, first Earl of Avon, statesman, 1977; Anais Nin, writer and poetess, 1977; Peter Finch (William Mitchell), actor, 1977; Gilbert Spencer, artist, 1979.

On this day: the Great Frost Fair began on the Thames, 1205; Norway was ceded to the King of Sweden by the King of Denmark, 1814; another great Frost Fair was held on the Thames, 1814; an attempt was made on the life of Napoleon III by Felice Orsini, an Italian revolutionary, 1858; Queen Victoria heard a concert relayed to her by telephone, 1878; Puccini's opera Tosca was first performed, Rome 1900; an earthquake in Jamaica destroyed Kingston and killed over 1,000, 1907; German warships bombarded Yarmouth, 1918; in the Italian general election, 29 Fascists were returned, 1921; Winston Churchill and Franklin Roosevelt met at Casablanca, 1943; the Players' Theatre, London, opened, 1946; Marshal Tito was elected first president of the Yugoslav republic, 1953; the musical show The Boy Friend was first produced, London 1954; police mistakenly opened fire on Stephen Waldorf, believing him to be an escaped prisoner, David Martin, 1983; the law requiring motorists to wear seat-belts was made permanent, 1986.

Today is the Feast Day of St Antony Pucci, St Barbasymas or Barbascemin, St Datius, St Felix of Nola, St Kentigern or Mungo, St Macrina the Elder, The Martyrs of Mount Sinai and St Sava.